Have You Tried BuildTak?

By on May 8th, 2014 in Hardware

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Frustrated by 3D prints that don’t stick to your print bed? Drives us crazy too. Now there may be a good solution to that issue: BuildTak.

The print-doesn’t-stick problem has been around for as long as personal 3D printers have existed. If the print doesn’t stick, it’s a failure. You waste plastic and more importantly you waste time. 

Many solutions have been developed by enthusiasts around the world, including: 

  • Printing on blue tape (for PLA)
  • Printing on a heated bed (for ABS and other higher-temp plastics)
  • Printing on a water-based glue
  • Printing on Kapton tape
  • Printing on a slurry of ABS and Acetone (for ABS plastic)
  • Printing on a hairsprayed surface

And we’re certain individuals have tried many more combinations. These all work in certain circumstances, but none are ideal. They can be messy, expensive or work for only one type of material. Some require a lot of extra work, such as the water-based glue, which causes a trip to the sink after each print. Others like hairspray or blue tape require a trip to the store for replenishment. Some require special attention to pry off prints when completed, like refrigeration. 

Enter BuildTak. It’s a plastic sheet that you simply paste on your print surface. The upper surface of BuildTak is designed to provide significant adhesion for all major plastics without any need to change it. Just install and use. Even better, objects can be easily removed without major effort. No fuss, no mess. We understand that a sheet of BuildTak will eventually wear out, but it apparently lasts a lot longer than many of the solutions listed above. 

BuildTak sheets are sold in various sizes, aimed at matching the print bed area for common 3D printers. You might be tempted to buy one that fits your machine precisely, but ask yourself first: how many times have you actually printed to the Full Size of your print bed? More than likely the answer is never. We recommend picking a slightly smaller size to save some cash, or consider chopping up a larger piece. 

Pricing is dependent on the size you select and the quantity you order. However, a single sheet that’s 6.5 x 10.0” is priced at USD$10.10. You’ll get a better deal if you order more – that’s our plan. 

Via BuildTak